Rivers and creeks running high after rains

Heavy rain storms and warmer temperatures hit parts of the south coast region, causing rivers to rise in Chilliwack.

Search and Rescue officials are warning people to stay away from the murky and turbid Chilliwack-Vedder River.

Flood watchers in Chilliwack had their eyes peeled this week.

Heavy rain storms and warmer temperatures hit parts of the south coast region, causing creeks and rivers to rise in Chilliwack.

Officials with the Chilliwack Emergency Program urge everyone “to take special care at this time of year” when significant rain storms can arrive.

Caution is key especially when high stream-flow or flood watch advisories are issued. There were none in effect at press time.

“Residents, recreationalists and visitors to the area are urged to use extreme caution on and near all waterways including water ditches,” according to the City of Chilliwack notice. “Rain storm waters can be fast-rising and fast-moving.”

It can also make shorelines unstable. People are asked to stay well away from the water’s edge and to be especially vigilant for the safety of children and pets along rivers and creeks that can prove unpredictable and dangerous. See more at the Chilliwack Weather Forecast.

They’re calling for four-day rain totals in the region to be between 100 and 400 mm.

Chris Wilson, manager of Emergency Services for FVRD said they’ve had conference calls with Environment Canada and Emergency Management B.C. reps, and will continue to monitoring the local conditions this week.

“Even though it may be nice to look at the high water as it’s rushing by, we recommend staying away right now. People can be overtaken quite quickly,” he said.

The heavy rain warning was lifted for the Fraser Valley area last night, but they’re still watching levels on the Fraser and Chilliwack rivers, and stream flows. Rapidly rising temperatures can lead to snow melt adding to the runoff into creeks.

“We are still in for a couple more days of rain,” he said.

North Van took the bulk of rainfall Monday and suffered a slide that has since been stabilized. Some trails had to be closed.

If any residents see anything significant to report, from very heavy stream flows, to a sudden absence of flows that could indicate a blockage on a local stream or river, they can call FVRD emergency services 604-702-5000 or city reps at 604-792-9311.

jfeinberg@theprogress.com

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